I woke up headachy and ended up going back to bed for awhile. So now it is almost 11 and I've done basically nothing yet. This will probably be a somewhat short post because I have optimistically put my exercise leggings on and am planning to try to get out for some exercise before lunch. Or maybe right after lunch. We'll see.
Anyway, let's get to the links.
This week, we had reports come out on both the J&J and Novavax vaccines. I am encouraged by both, and would take either if it were offered to me. Derek Lowe did a nice job summarizing what the reports tell us. Although the top line efficacy numbers for these two vaccines are lower than for the mRNA vaccines that are currently FDA approved, that is not the full story. All of the vaccines seem quite effective at preventing hospitalization and death. The mRNA vaccine trials were done earlier in the pandemic, before some of the current worrisome variants emerged, and although lab tests indicate they should also be protective against those variants, we don't know what their percent efficacy would be if trialed now.
So my stance still remains: Take the first FDA-approved vaccine offered to me, as soon as it is offered.
Also, I am delighted to see that J&J is investigating the question of whether vaccinated people can get asymptomatic infections and transmit the virus:
6. Part of the J&J trial involves sequential blood draws to look for whether vaccinated people can be asymptomatically infected & transmit virus. Very few cases so far but it will be a month or 2 before they have enough data to analyze this.— Helen Branswell (@HelenBranswell) January 29, 2021
I was also delighted to read that the government thinks we may be vaccinating kids by the summer.
This is a riveting story of the attack on the Capitol, told by a reporter who was trapped inside. I do not think most Americans are really grasping how close we came to that day being so much worse. I think many of us - probably myself included - aren't allowing ourselves to really process that, because there are too many other things we need to do and to focus on what happened on January 6 might derail us.
Tressie McMillan Cottom on what rejecting white supremacy really means for many white people.
In environmental news:
David Roberts has a summary of all the good things Biden has already done on climate.
I'm going to stop there because my husband is listening to music that is making my headache come back. But he is mopping the floor so I hate to complain... I think I should just get out for that walk.
But first, here are things that made me smile this week:
Goats with pool noodles:
Today I learned that aggressive baby goats have to wear horn noodles to avoid hurting each other pic.twitter.com/NokkoQd2xn— Parker (@panoparker) January 28, 2021
This beautiful thread:
My mom has dementia & has lived in a dedicated memory care home 3 years. She received her first Moderna shot today. For the last year there’s been a lot of talk about how to assign value to lives like hers, so I want to tell you a story about the necklace she’s wearing. pic.twitter.com/MWhKD8ye0L— Dr. Jen “Keep wearing the mask” Phillips 🗽🇺🇸🌎 (@ClutchScience) January 26, 2021
This is the most important video I've ever seen. pic.twitter.com/a8Yu8apntI— Ꮍᴀᴇʟ (@elle91) January 25, 2021
One of the things we love about belted kingfishers — such as this one at McKinley Woods — is that they can provide a nice pop of color on an overcast winter day. (Photo courtesy of Mat Zook) #birdtwitter pic.twitter.com/EX2ck1vW6s— WillCoForestPreserve (@WillCoForests) January 30, 2021
Here's your bunny for the week:
Have a good weekend!